Understatement of the Month

DISQUIET

So what do you think of that NYT headline? Saying a Clinton political organization shows "signs of disquiet" is akin to saying "Steve thinks cocktails are mostly OK." Good lord, we're talking about Team Clinton here -- where backbiting, leaks, firings, and scandal are the orders of the day.

In any case, here's the latest disquiet:

At issue is controlling access to the deep-pocketed donors whose support is critical to sustain the outside organizations that are paving the way for Mrs. Clinton’s campaign. It is a competition that has been exacerbated, many Clinton supporters said, by Mrs. Clinton’s reluctance to formally enter the race and establish a campaign organization with clear lines of authority.

The dispute broke into the open on Monday after David Brock, a Clinton ally, accused Priorities USA Action — a pro-Clinton “super PAC” whose co-chairman is Jim Messina, Mr. Obama’s 2012 campaign manager — of planting negative stories about the fund-raising practices of Mr. Brock’s organizations. Mr. Brock resigned from the super PAC’s board in protest.

If this were a Republican campaign acting like this, the story wouldn't describe the situation as "disquiet." Rather, the headlines would scream, "CAN THEY GOVERN???"

Which brings us to Hillary's Dilemma.

Although by 2016 it will have been 20 years (!) since a Clinton ran a winning national campaign, older voters probably remember all too well just how effing exhausting it was having the Clintons in the White House. That team used to wage policy and personality battles -- in public, mind you -- like the Russians and Germans fought at Stalingrad, with the losers treated badly enough to make Friedrich Paulus weep. Millions remember Bill Clinton's term fondly, but far fewer relish a return to his Administration's... disquiet.

And for younger voters, it will have been 20 years (!) since a Clinton ran a winning national campaign. That's a generation ago, and Hillary is a big step down from Bill Clinton's youth and charisma of the 1990s, and an even bigger step down from Barack Obama's youth and charisma of the last eight years.

Perhaps she's gone into "hiding" because completely disappearing from the public radar for a few months is her one and only chance to seem fresh before she actually has to go out and campaign.